Category Archives: Collectables

George Brough’s Superior Cufflinks

I just saw this when looking something up before leaving the house with bags of dirty laundry. Interesting piece of Nottingham history and and a reminder of times when people had staff to do their laundry.

Also a chance to slip a pun in, though it will only be noted by people who are familiar with motorcycles.

Of course, move me back to 1926 and I wouldn’t be the one with the notable gold cufflinks, I’d still have been the one doing the laundry.

Low Cunning and Bidding on ebay

Last week I bid £120 on a medallion. I’ve already had a discussion on thrift, common sense and my sanity with Julia, so we’ll gloss over that. My defence is that collecting is a mental condition rather than a hobby.

It’s like the one in the header picture but the reverse has the coat of arms of Skegness. The one in the picture is the commoner one with the coat of arms of Lincoln on the reverse.

There is a picture of the Skegness medal and much other material here.

I didn’t get it, and was annoyed to be the underbidder to a winning bid of £122. I was a bit shocked to be honest, as I really thought it should only be £80 – £90. The extra was the safety net to ensure I got it.

Ah well, some you win and some you lose.

Then it immediately reappeared for sale, using the same photographs, but this time with a reserve. Curiouser and curiouser as they say. Well, Alice said it in Wonderland, and there’s a lot in ebay that reminds me of life through the Looking Glass.

I watched it. I considered writing to ask what was happening. I thought of reporting it to ebay, because it looked like someone had bid it up and bought it back themselves by accident. Such things have been known, though I can’t say for sure. I can only say that I was suspicious, and that there were certain indications that this was the case.

Anyway, I didn’t bid. I watched, I compared the bidders with the bidders on the previous “sale” and I waited. Eventually I decided what to do and put a bid on it. Someone outbid me. It was the same bidder that had outbid me last time.

This was where my low cunning came in.

I bid again, just another £2.

They bid again and outbid me again.

But, I think they got the message – that there would be no big bid this time – and they didn’t bid again when I added an extra couple of quid. After all, how many times do you want to buy your own stuff back? It gets expensive when you have commission to pay.

Nobody else bid either and I closed the sale at £87. It’s enough, but it’s £33 cheaper than I bid on the previous one. Assuming my earlier suspicions were justified I’d like to think of it as both a result (better price) and a lesson (greed doesn’t pay).

 

A Thing of Beauty

No, it’s not another picture of Julia, though if she’s reading this I would like to point out that the title would fit.

This is an item I saw in a collectors’ shop in Nottingham last week. It’s the badge of an ex-Lady Mayoress of Nottingham from 1951-2. The workmanship, including the enamelling, is top quality, and it really is a thing of beauty. It is also a piece of Nottingham history.

Ruth Wigman, the recipient, would probably to be the wife of Alderman George H. Wigman who was Lord Mayor at that time. I’ve tried various searches but the internet seems to be empty of information on the Wigmans. I had hoped that Wigman Road might be something to do with them, but it just seems to complicate the search.

It is made from 9 carat gold and manufactured by Vaughtons of Birmingham. It appears that it was assembled after the engraving was done, as one of the fixings has obscured part of the inscription.

One of the more notable Vaughton family members was Oliver Howard Vaughton. He played football for England and Aston Villa, won the All England Skating Championship, cycled, swam, played county cricket for Warwickshire and was a County hockey player. He’s a bit more famous than the Wigmans, though, to be fair, neither of them scored five goals in an international football match or won the FA Cup.

Wolves Badge – the Result

I’ve just been down to the shop to see how the Wolves badge sold.

If you recall, I said: The badge is currently making £21 on ebay. My professional opinion is that it will make at least £40 and, if you have two keen collectors after it, possibly twice as much. If it does, I will be right and people will think I’m an expert. And if I’m wrong it will be the fault of the auction for failing to attract the right quality of bidder.

Well, as it turns out, I was wrong by quite a margin.

It made £170. Even in my wildest dreams I’d barely thought of three figures. Traditionally, if you watch antiques experts on TV, this is seen  a great success. In truth I was wrong by about 40%. However, I refer to my previous answer (as they say at Prime Minister’s Questions) –  if I’m wrong it will be the fault of the auction for failing to attract the right quality of bidder. 

So, not my fault.

However, all joking apart, it’s nice to see that there are keen collectors about, and to report that the badge is currently in the post, making its way back to Wolverhampton.

A Rare Wolves Football Badge

Yesterday a dealer asked me if I’d take a look through a couple of bags of odds and ends . It’s a tempting offer when your natural habitat is the margins of the antiques trade.

There were some interesting bits in the bags, including a couple of bits I wanted for myself. I suppose I could have declared a liking for the badge in the picture and bought it for a fiver, but I’m both honest and an idiot. Honest is good because, apart from the obvious, you get given bags of interesting stuff to look through. An idiot, because I’m poor as a result.

It looked to me like a pre-war football badge. I’ve had a few, mainly picked up cheap, from dealers. I’d never cheat anyone by telling them they were worthless, but if a dealer wants to put one out for £5 I’ll happily hand over the money.

We checked it up on the internet and it’s a badge done for Wolverhampton Wanderers fans for the 1939 FA Cup Final. Portsmouth won 4-1 and held the cup until 1946 due to a pressing away fixture against Germany that took a few years to clear up.

Wolves went on to win it in 1949 and 1960, making their record four wins in eight finals.

The badge is currently making £21 on ebay. My professional opinion is that it will make at least £40 and, if you have two keen collectors after it, possibly twice as much. If it does, I will be right and people will think I’m an expert. And if I’m wrong it will be the fault of the auction for failing to attract the right quality of bidder.

See, it’s easy to be an antiques dealer – you just have to say things in the right way and you will never be wrong.